Na Piarsaigh 1-22
2016 ALL-IRELAND club hurling champions Na Piarsaigh are back on top in Limerick.
The Limerick city side had five points to spare over Kilmallock in this Gaelic Grounds Limerick SHC but with eight minutes to play, they were 1-21 to 0-11 clear.
Kilmallock, 2015 All-Ireland club finalists, found late consolation goals from Mulcahy brothers Jake and Graeme.
Na Piarsaigh now advance to play Cork’s Blackrock in the Munster club championship.
By half time, Na Piarsaigh were 0-14 to 0-7 clear with six different players on the scoreboard and just one wide registered. At the other end, Kilmallock had six wides.
Na Piarsaigh made the early running and were 0-5 to 0-1 ahead by the 10th minute with Kevin Downes, David Dempsey and Adrian and David Breen on the mark.
Frees from Eoin Ryan helped Kilmallock to gain a foothold and then Graeme Mulcahy had successive points and the lead was just one point, 0-6 to 0-5, at the mid-point of the half.
But there was another gear in Na Piarsaigh and frees from Shane Dowling and Ronan Lynch moved them 0-11 to 0-6 ahead.
Na Piarsaigh had points from Kevin Downes, Adrian Breen and Ronan Lynch early in the second half.
Gavin O’Mahony, Paudie O’Brien and Graeme Mulcahy had Kilmallock points but Na Piarsaigh kept them at arm’s length.
The Na Piarsaigh goal came in the 47th minute from David Dempsey and when Peter Casey and Breen added points, they were 1-21 to 0-11 clear with eight minutes left.
In the 57th minute Jake Mulcahy goaled and then in the third minute of injury time, his brother Graeme raised another green flag but they were not denying Na Piarsaigh a fourth Limerick crown in seven years.
Scorers for Na Piarsaigh: Adrian Breen 0-6, Shane Dowling 0-5 (5f), David Dempsey 1-2, Kevin Downes 0-3, Ronan Lynch 0-2 (1f), David Breen, Alan Dempsey, Peter Casey and Thomas Grimes 0-1 each.
Scorers for Kilmallock: Graeme Mulcahy 1-4, Jake Mulcahy 1-1, Kevin O’Donnell 0-3, Eoin Ryan 0-2 (2f), Robbie Hanley, Gavin O’Mahony, Micheal Houlihan and Paudie O’Brien 0-1 each.
1. Padraic Kennedy
2. Jerome Boylan
3. Mike Casey
4. Niall Buckley
5. Tommy Grimes
6. Cathal King
7. Alan Dempsey
8. Shane Dowling
9. William O’Donoghue
20. Ronan Lynch
11. David Breen
12. David Dempsey
10. Adrian Breen
14. Kevin Downes
15. Peter Casey
24. Gordan Brown for Shane Dowling (42)
23. Conor Boylan for David Breen (48)
17. Mike Foley for William O’Donoghue (58)
18. James O’Brien for Jerome Boylan (61)
1. Barry Hennessy
2. Liam Hurley
3. Mark O’Loughlin
4. Aaron Costelloe
5. Dan Joy
6. Philip O’Loughlin
7. Paddy O’Loughlin
8. Jake Mulcahy
9. Kevin O’Donnell
10. Paudie O’Brien
11. Gavin O’Mahony
14. Robbie Hanley
13. Graeme Mulcahy
15. Eoin Ryan
12. Micheal Houlihan
17. Oisin O’Reilly for Ryan (h-t)
19. David Woulfe for Houlihan (52)
Referee: Donnacha O’Callaghan (Feohanagh-Castlemahon)
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